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The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Tyler Kolek sets single-game assist record in 105-71 win over DePaul

Tyler Kolek dished a record 18 assists in Marquette’s win over DePaul. (Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics.)

Earlier Wednesday, Tyler Kolek was given a gold t-shirt that read “Barbecue Chicken” on the front just above his No. 11. It was from when he turned St. John’s into “barbecue chicken” in an 86-75 win Feb. 10.

Later that night, Kolek etched his name into the Marquette men’s basketball record books — and held another cookout.

The All-American point guard broke the program single-game assists record (18) in the No. 7 Golden Eagles’ 105-71 win over DePaul. He beat the record 17 assists Tony Miller earned in 1995 vs. Memphis.

“I’m just grateful. I mean, it’s been a long journey in basketball, and everything I’ve been through leading up to this point has brought me here,” Kolek said. “I’m looking to keep it going.”

By halftime, he had already dished 13. And despite the game already being a laugher, there was no talk of him not going back on the floor.

“All hell would’ve broke loose if I didn’t,” Kolek quipped.

He’d come close to the record before — dishing a then-career high 15 against Georgetown last season — but an inbound pass to Kam Jones with 8:31 remaining in the game, which Jones nailed, gave him his 18th.

“You could tell by watching Tyler play tonight, and all year long and his whole career since he got here. He is a special player for a lot of ways, but one of the reasons is he gets a kick out of getting his teammate shots,” Marquette head coach Shaka Smart said. “He really enjoys that part of the game.

“Marquette history, up there Tony Miller, 17, Doc Rivers, 16. Those are big names. Those are guys that have been on record books for a long, long time. And he could’ve had more.”

Kam Jones scores new career-high

Just a few weeks ago, Jones scored a career-high 31 points in Marquette’s 91-57 win over Georgetown Feb. 3.

Wednesday, he surpassed that number, scoring 34.

And the basket that got him his best points-total to date? Kolek’s record-breaking assist.

A poetic play.

“I didn’t know that. Somebody told me that actually on the bench. So it’s pretty special moment,” Kolek said about the assist. “He told me, he said, ‘You passing to me, I’m getting it for you.’

“He plays the game with so much joy, and you can see it. He hit that shot, he’s running and he falls on the ground. It’s this special moment.”

After the play, both Jones and Kolek waltzed off the court for the final time to a standing ovation followed by hugs from Smart.

Jones was responsible for eight of the Golden Eagles’ 12 threes, finishing 80% from deep.

Marquette starts three-game homestand

Six of the Golden Eagles’ last eight games came on the road, a trip which ended with an 81-53 thumping at the hands of No. 1 UConn last Saturday. Their two home games in the past month came against Seton Hall, Jan. 27, and St. John’s.

But Wednesday was the first leg of a three-game homestand for Marquette.

“Somebody brought it up to me. Three (home) games left after this one,” Kolek said. “Even at the end of the game, we walk around to all the fans and just taking all those little moments in and cherishing everything.

“Actually, at shootaround today, and after shootaround, I was over, I was just sitting there on the side, just watching guys mess around do whatever. Just trying to take every single moment and not waste any of that and really be present.”

The Golden Eagles host Xavier (13-13, 7-8 Big East) Sunday at 4 p.m. and Providence (18-9, 9-7 Big East) next Wednesday at 6 p.m. CST.

Against the Musketeers, Marquette will honor the 1974 Final Four Team.

“It’s kind of hard to imagine that it’s been 50 years since that team competed and made it to the the championship game,” Smart said. “Just some iconic Marquette legends on that team. Grateful for the fact that a lot of those guys are going to be able to be here. I mean, I don’t think any of us take that for granted.”

Perhaps Kolek will have a performance that warrants getting him a chef’s hat to go along with his shirt.

This article was written by Jack Albright. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter/X @JackAlbrightMU.

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About the Contributor
Jack Albright
Jack Albright, Assistant Sports Editor
Jack Albright is a junior from Charlton, Massachusetts studying journalism. He is an Assitant Sports Editor for the 2024-2025 school year. In his free time, Jack likes to hang out with friends and watch Formula 1. He is excited to write fun stories about all things Marquette athletics and oversee new types of digital content.

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